Bullish options traders more than doubled their money in KKR &Co. Inc. (KKR) on November 2.
On October 30, Investitute's tracking systems found that 32,300 January $25 calls were purchased mostly in one print of 30,866 for $0.55 and $0.60 with shares at $22.67. This was clearly fresh buying, as volume was far above the strike's previous open interest of 10,500 contracts.
These investors may have believed that shares of KKR had much further upside into the beginning of 2019, as rising interest rates behoove M&A related companies to seek financing for deals while costs are cheap.
Those January $25 calls traded for as much as $1.60 Friday morning, more than 2.5 times their purchase price. The stock rose 11.29% in the same time frame, showing how quickly options can far outpace gains in their underlying shares.
Long calls lock in the price where investors can buy a stock, letting them position for a rally at limited cost with the potential for significant leverage. They carry less risk than owning shares because the most that can be lost is the price of the options no matter how far the stock might fall.
KKR rose to $25.30 early Friday, November 2, but pulled back with the broader market to close at $23.89, down 2.27% on the session. Shares rallied the day before after the New York Post reported that the private-equity firm was bidding for Acadia Pharmaceuticals.